Field of Science

Botanical garden refugee camps for plants

Please understand that every botanist TPP knows would like to take measures to stop or reduce global warming.  However, botanists are a pragmatic bunch and here is a news article about an endangered plant rescue plan that uses botanical gardens as refugee camps and way stations.  Let's consider the two closest big botanical gardens: the Missouri Botanical Garden and the Chicago Botanical Garden.  It takes about 5 hours to drive between them on a largely north-south vector.  But there is a good one and a half to two climate zones between them.  If things keep going the way they seem to be going in another 40 years the climate at the Chicago Botanic Garden will be like it is now in Missouri.  Of course then Missouri will be even hotter and drier (?) maybe something like the Texas panhandle.  So the idea is to shift endangered species from one refugee camp to another as way stations because there is no way they could migrate on their own, and they are setting up a network for this purpose now.  How grimly pragmatic is that?

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